Oregon Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden announced that the Senate Appropriations Committee has provided funding for the U.S. Coast Guard helicopter facility in Newport to stay open through September 2016. The funding was included in the Homeland Security appropriations bill for fiscal year 2016, which passed the committee this morning. The bill must still pass the full Senate and the House of Representatives and be signed by the President for the funding to be assured.
“The Newport helicopter facility has helped save countless lives over the years and now we are one step closer to keeping it open for an additional year,” said Merkley. “It’s crucial that we keep this lifesaving facility operating on Oregon’s central coast.”
“I’m gratified that the Senate Appropriations Committee heard my request loud and clear and provided the critical funding to keep Newport’s air facility open through September 2016,” Wyden said. “Today’s good news about this extension for the Coast Guard station provides us more time to seek a long-term permanent solution that recognizes the facility must remain in Newport. Given the Coast Guard’s record of saving lives in the cold waters of the Pacific Ocean, keeping that facility open in Newport is literally a life-or-death question.” Continue reading